Historic Church Street

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Historic Church Street

presbchurchChurch Street was originally called Cotton Street, having been named after the Cotton family. The name was originally changed to Church Street possibly because eight (8) churches are located along it.

The eight (8) historic churches located on Church Street include –

First Presbyterian Church – Organized in 1807, present building 1859. It is well known for the gilded hand that tops the steeple. The original hand was fashioned in wood by local artist Daniel Foley. Time took its toll on the original hand and it was replaced in early 1900’s by one made of metal.

St. Joseph Catholic Church – 1849. Altar paintings by Thomas Healy and carvings by Daniel Foley. Oldest surviving church in Port Gibson. Known for its altar rail, hand-carved by a 17-year old artist. Open Monday to Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission free.

St. Peter’s A.M.E. Church – 1870. A simplified version of the High Victorian Gothic style. Original weatherboards and octagonal spire were replaced with brick facing. By appointment only.

Christian Chapel Church – Congregation established in 1845, present structure built in 1974.

Temple-Gemiluth-Chessed1-298x300Temple Gemiluth Chassed – 1891. The oldest Jewish Synagogue in the state and the only surviving one of its architectural style in Mississippi. By appointment only.

Port Gibson Baptist Church – Organized in 1872, present structure built in 1923. Two story brick building with steps leading to a second level porch supported by Doric columns.

St. James Episcopal Church – Organized in 1826, present structure built in 1884. Brick church with Victorian lines and a steepled belfry designed by W.O. Wentworth, a famous architect from Boston. Original cost to build – $5,000.00

Port Gibson Methodist Church – Organized 1804, present structure built in 1860. Romanesque Revival style architecture. Constructed on the site of a former church that burned in 1858.

St. Joseph Catholic Church, Port Gibson (1849, John Foley, archt.)

Picturing Our Past

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Picturing Our Past

An exhibit of 53 vintage photographs of Port Gibson and Claiborne County. Included are images of early 20th century agriculture, transportation, historic buildings and domestic life. Located in the Port Gibson City Hall, 1005 College Street. Open Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM until 5:00 PM.

Samuel Gibson House

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Samuel Gibson House

The Samuel Gibson House, the second home of the founder of Port Gibson, is the oldest existing structure in Port Gibson. It was moved from its original site to the present location on Church Street in the early part of 1980. The house now serves as the headquarters of the Port Gibson-Claiborne County Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call 601.437.5216.

Alcorn State University

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Alcorn State University

Founded in 1971, Alcorn is the oldest public historically black land-grant institution in the United States and the second oldest state supported institution of higher learning in Mississippi.  Alcorn was founded as a result of the people of Mississippi’s efforts to educate the descendants of formerly enslaved Africans. It was named in honor of the sitting governor of Mississippi, James L. Alcorn. The site was originally occupied by Oakland College, a school established by Presbyterians in 1828.

Alcorn’s Oakland Memorial – circa 1839 is one of 6 buildings on the campus built in the 1830’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Grand Gulf Military Park

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Grand Gulf Military Park

The 450 acre park officially opened May 6, 1962. The park is a Civil War battlefield site with two fortifications, picnic areas, hiking trails, observation tower, museum, cemetery, RV and tent camping with showers and laundry facility. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Mississippi Cultural Crossroads

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Mississippi Cultural Crossroads

Mississippi Cultural Crossroads is the local arts agency for Claiborne County. MCC maintains a gallery displaying locally made folk quilts by master quilters. Most mornings ladies can be found working around their quilting frame.

Windsor Ruins

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Windsor Ruins

windsorruinsBuilt in 1860, west of Port Gibson by Smith C. Daniell, II. In 1890 the main structure was destroyed by fire, leaving only stately columns as mute evidence of a glorious, historic past. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is the most photographed site in the State of Mississippi.

No Easy Journey

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No Easy Journey

No Easy Journey is a permanent exhibit of photographs, text, and material objects designed to recall the turburlent times of the Civil Rights Movement, which brought about permanent changes in the way blacks and whites would live together in Claiborne County.

The exhibit is installed in the William ‘Matt’ Ross Administration Building, which was completed in 1994 and named in honor of the first black supervisor in 20th century Claiborne County, elected in 1967.

The Sunken Trace

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The Sunken Trace

Mile marker 100 to 0, Natchez Trace ParkwayPreserved here is a portion of the deeply eroded or ‘sunken’ Old Trace. Hardships of journeying on the Old Trace included heat, mosquitos, poor food, hard beds (if any), disease, and harsh swamps. Take five minutes to walk this sunken trail and let your imagination carry you back to the early 1800s when people walking 500 miles had to put up with these discomforts. This was a place where broken leg or arm could spell death for the lone traveler.

The Sunken Trace is located on the Natchez Trace Parkway near Port Gibson, Mississippi at milepost 41.5.